YESTERDAY – A Review by Cynthia Flores
I like the Beatles, I enjoy their hits. I am not a hardcore fan. That being said, I really like this new film. Yesterday from Academy Award-winning director Danny Boyle. This is a rock and roll romcom about music, dreams, friendship and as the Beatles put it “the long and winding road” that leads to the love of your life.
The film centers on a fascinating question; What would the world be like if the Beatles and their music had never happened? It examines this question through the story of Jack Malik (Himesh Patel) who is a struggling singer-songwriter in a tiny English seaside town whose dreams of fame are rapidly fading. He’s tired of working dead-end part-time jobs to play gigs that no one other than his friends attends. His best friend and manager is his fiercest devoted fan and support since childhood. Her name is Ellie (Lily James), and she is secretly in love with him as well. On the eve of his last gig where he comes to terms with the fact that fame will never happen for him, he is in a freak bus accident during a mysterious global blackout.
Jack wakes up to discover that The Beatles have never existed… and he finds himself with a very complicated problem. Does he have the right to pass off the songs as his own? Can Jack get away with performing songs by the greatest band in history to a world that has never heard them? Well, he gives it a try, and it works. With the help from his bloodthirsty, American agent, Debra (Kate McKinnon), Jack’s fame explodes. He is taken over by her team of media experts, and they remake is image as he records what will become the album of the century. All of it is his remakes of Beatles hits. But as his star rises, he risks losing Ellie — the one person who always believed in him.
I liked two things most about this new film. One, it’s an original idea and not a “re-telling or remake” of a classic we grew up with. Proof that there are great fresh ideas and stories out there to bring to the screen. And two, that the film respected how important songs can be. The example of their influence in this film is its running joke throughout the movie about what common everyday items we use that don’t exist in this Beatles free, alternate reality. Yesterday also reminds us how good these songs from the Beatles were and still are.
Hopefully, Yesterday might turn on a younger, new audience to this still relevant band and their songs. I give this film an A rating and think it’s the perfect date night film for this summer.
Directed by Danny Boyle
Written by Richard Curtis, Jack Barth, Richard Curtis
Selig Rating A
Running Time 1hr 56min
Wide Release June 28th
Starring: Himesh Patel, Lily James, Kate McKinnon, Ed Sheeran, Joel Fry
The Selig Rating Scale:
A – Excellent movie, well worth the price.
B – Good movie
C – OK movie
D – No need to rush. Save it for a rainy day.
F – Good that I saw it on the big screen but wish I hadn’t paid for it.